U2 played a surprise World AIDS Day concert for (RED) last night in Times Square but had some last minute substitutions.
Because Bono is still recovering from a November 16 bicycle accident in Central Park, the band announced via its Facebook page at 3 pm yesterday that Adam Clayton, The Edge and Larry Mullen Jr. would be joined by Chris Martin and Bruce Springsteen, who donated their time and talents.
Martin wore a t-shirt that read 'SUBSTITU2'.
Carrie Underwood and Kanye West performed as well. Former President Bill Clinton introduced the band.
Bob Geldof is getting the Band Aid back together again. In a press conference on Monday, Geldof and Midge Ure announced that the iconic (and some say annoying) charity hit "Do They Know It's Christmas" will be re-recorded to raise funds to fight ebola, with new artists like Sam Smith, Ed Sheeran, One Direction, and Adele joining megabands like Coldplay and U2 (who were on the original 1984 recording). The lyrics of the song will be slightly adjusted to reflect the situation of ebola rather than famine, which was their original cause celeb.
Geldof said that the new group, named Band Aid 30 in honor of the 30th anniversary of the first recording, was inspired not by nostalgia but by the United Nations. "Three weeks ago I got a call from the UN saying they required a 20% increase across the board [in funding to fight ebola]," said Geldof, known as much for being a humanitarian and a musician. "They are very concerned about the situation in west Africa.”
Geldof will gather all the artists in a London studio this weekend with an online release next Monday. This marks the fourth time the song will be recorded to help a humanitarian cause, the last effort being in 2004 with a hip hop-oriented cover to raise money for war torn Darfur. Geldof also mentioned that he had contacted Quincy Jones to see about enlisting American artists to help. Can a "We Are The World"-redux be next?
Outkast, Muse, and Arcade Fire will headline this year's Coachella music festival in Indio, California which takes place the weekends of April 11-13 and April 18-20.
The L.A. Times adds: "Additionally, Coachella will mark the West Coast return of the Replacements, the scrappy 1980s indie rock outfit that unexpectedly reformed in fall 2013. The act broke up on stage in Chicago in 1991. Beloved rock acts such as Neutral Milk Hotel and the Afghan Whigs will also make a rare live appearance at Coachella."
There had been rumors that U2 might headline Coachella this year but so far, no dice.
Robbie Daw presents a weekly pop music update here on Towleroad. Robbie runs his own site called Chart Rigger.
Yesterday (March 2) marked 10 years since the death of British soul singer Dusty Springfield, known for such songs as "Wishin' And Hopin'," "I Only Want To Be With You" and "Son Of A Preacher Man." After being diagnosed with breast cancer, Dusty passed away the day she was to receive the OBE (Order of the British Empire) at Buckingham Palace, and 10 days before she was to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame in the U.S. She was 59.
At her funeral in London, Elton John noted, "I think she is the greatest white singer that there ever has been," while Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys said, "I think Dusty would have been amazed and moved to learn how much she means to people, what an impact her singing has made, what fondness people feel for her. The British have always taken pop music surprisingly seriously and they know that Dusty Springfield was unique, a soul singer, a star, the real thing. Dusty's voice is always there to lift you up when you're down. I feel proud that we knew her and worked with her and played a small part in her fabulous life. She was 'fab', and because of her music, she always will be."
The site Broadway World stated yesterday that Wicked and Pushing Daisies actress Kristin Chenoweth is currently developing a movie based on the life of Springfield, which Playbill mentioned in 2005 would focus on the singer's life while recording her classic 1969 album Dusty In Memphis.
Below are some clips of Dusty Springfield both in her prime in the '60s and after her successful comeback in the 1980s.
If you're planning to see M83 perform with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Walt Disney Concert Hall this Saturday, don't expect to hear "Kim & Jessie" or anything off the French band's recent album Saturdays = Youth. Says frontman Anthony Gonzales, "We'll play tracks that are more like orchestral material—mostly songs from my previous albums, for example 'Before The Dawn Heals Us', because I don't think it's really interesting to play pop songs with the orchestra."
The reunited No Doubt (above) to perform on the May 11 season finale of Gossip Girl. Then band will do a cover of Adam and the Ants' "Stand And Deliver" on the hit nighttime teen soap, before Gwen Stefani and Co. head off on tour this summer.
Metalheads, get ready to rock the big screen. The high-def documentary Iron Maiden: Flight 666 will air for one day only (April 21) on 400 screens in 34 different countries. The film chronicles Iron Maiden circling the globe on a Boeing 757 to perform 23 sold out stadium and arena shows. The band was named Best Live Act at the Brit Awards two weeks ago.
An interesting review of Erasure's Total Pop!—The First 40 Hits compilation from U.K. site The Quietus: "That Erasure were fated forever to remain in the critical and commercial shadow of fellow synth-pop behemoths the Pet Shop Boys seems largely down to their more overtly gay aesthetic: while Q journalists and Mondeo Man alike could cheerfully endorse the latter’s arch pop nous and ambiguous sexuality without too many hang-ups, it was harder to fully embrace Erasure’s flamboyant outrageousness without finding your masculinity just a little compromised. No matter: in an era when the contrived camp affectations of The Scissor Sisters and Mika is hailed as in some way progressive and ground-breaking, Erasure deserve to be celebrated for their sparkling originality and crusading flamboyance, but mostly for their impeccable tuneage. Be out and be proud."
TODAY'S NEW RELEASES:
U2's twelfth studio album No Line On The Horizon, featuring a photograph of the sea meeting the sky by Hiroshi Sugimoto on the cover. Last night in Los Angeles, a special U2 pop up installation was opened to the public at Space 15 Twenty on North Cahuenga Blvd. The installation is open today from noon to 9 p.m., as well. Rock photographer Anton Corbijn's pictures of the band are on display, and his new film Linear will be screened at the location.
Total Dance 2009, mixed by Tony Okungbowa and featuring remixes of hits by Katy Perry, Britney Spears, Estelle, David Archuleta, Coldplay and Chris Brown, amongst others. Annoyingly, iTunes only offers the continuous mix as one hour+-long MP3.